A memorial Mass for Sister Bonaventure McManus was celebrated Oct. 6. Sister Bonaventure died Aug. 9, just one day before the 80th anniversary of her profession as a Sister of the Most Precious Blood of O’Fallon. She was 99.
Born in Conception, Mo., on Nov. 26, 1918, to William and Mary (Corcoran) McManus Sr, she was baptized the same day at Conception Abbey and given the name Lorene. The third of six children, she followed in the footsteps of her older sister, Sister Emerita, and came to O’Fallon as an aspirant after eighth grade. She entered the novitiate in July 1937 and professed vows on Aug. 10, 1939.
For the first 20 years of her religious life, Sister Bonaventure served as a cook and homemaker in O’Fallon, Florissant, at the archbishop’s residence in St. Louis, and in Quincy, Ill. In 1959, she began teaching kindergarten and primary grades at St. George, St. John the Baptist and St. Stephen Protomartyr, all in St. Louis. She served as a pastoral minister and rectory cook at St. Elizabeth Church in Kansas City, Mo., and in ministry to the poor at St. Agatha’s Food Pantry in St. Louis. She had been serving in prayer and presence since 2014.
Sister Bonaventure is survived by a sister, Helen Billiard, and by several nieces and nephews. She donated her body to science.